House may pass 2016 budget with minimal changes, says lawmaker

By , on October 6, 2015


The Plenary Hall, House of Representatives Complex, Constitution Hills, Quezon City (Photo by Malacañang Photo Bureau/Robert Viñas)
The Plenary Hall, House of Representatives Complex, Constitution Hills, Quezon City
(Photo by Malacañang Photo Bureau/Robert Viñas)

MANILA – The House of Representatives may approve the P3-trillion national budget for 2016 on second and third reading with few changes, said House Majority Leader Neptali Gonzales II.

Wala pa namang nakikitang ganun (major realignments). It will depend sa appropriations committee and kung may changes na i-propose ang any of the agencies concerned. Wala pa akong nababalitaan. They will take care of it,” Gonzales told reporters.

(There hasn’t been any major realignment seen yet. It will depend on the appropriations committee and if there will be changes proposed by any of the agencies concerned. I haven’t heard anything yet. They will take care of it.)

The plenary has yet to create a committee that will be responsible for all proposals for amendments and only a certain number of days will be given for the raising of amendments.

Ang budget kasi is a different kind of bill. When it goes to the period of amendments, hindi talaga tine-take up ang individual amendments sa floor. We create a small committee tasked to accept and check the amendments that will be proposed,” the lawmaker said.

(The budget is a different kind of bill. When it goes to the period of amendments, individual amendments are not taken in the floor…)

Kung ano ang desisyon, that will be the final decision. Even in the past, kahit third reading wala nang appeal sa decision of the small committee,” he added.

(Whatever the decision will be, that will be the final decision. Even in the past, even in the third reading there is no longer an appeal to the decision of the small committee.)

2016 budget urgent

Expecting an erratic schedule for the Congress in the coming months, Gonzales asked President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III to certify the 2016 budget as urgent so that it may be approved on time.

Aside from the Halloween break from October 10 to November 2, lawmakers may also already be busy campaigning when they resume from break and lack of quorum may be a problem.

“I requested a certification to make the budget bill an urgent measure because of the difficulty of passing it on third and final reading… We have an erratic schedule and November 3 (resumption of session) falls on Tuesday,” Gonzalez explained.

Hindi ko alam if there are enough people. We will have difficulty to transmit that to the Senate. That is why I made a suggestion na magkaroon ng certification,” he added.

(I don’t know if there are enough people. We will have difficulty to transmit that to the Senate. That is why I made a suggestion for it to have a certification.)